Tampa Business Owner Wants To Open Liquor Store Next To Sobriety Center

AA Meetings And Liquor Stores Don’t Necessarily Mix

A Tampa business owner has local community members baffled at it’s current request to open a liquor store next to a sobriety center where AA meetings are held.

The storefronts are part of the Winn Dixie Plaza at Waters and Armenia Avenues. In order to open the liquor store the business owner is applying for a Special Use Permit from the county due to a church daycare center also being in the area.

At the zoning hearing on Monday, Dixie Liberty, a representative for the business owner, argued their case. According to Bay News 9, Liberty said the liquor store’s proximity to the sobriety center is irrelevant because it’s not a “community use” facility.

“It doesn’t matter that it’s next door. Anybody can move in next door,” said Liberty to Bay News 9. “There can be a restaurant with full liquor next door. What are they supposed to do? Move because there’s a rehab next door? That’s not community use. There’s no right or wrong. It’s everybody’s entitlement. This is what the business owner wants, this is her business, that’s it.”

Liberty also explained that an eight-foot wall would separate the liquor store from the daycare center and that the walking distance is far enough to not cause any problems.

“Plus the package store is in a retail center, so that’s not the only alcohol there,” she said to Bay News 9.

Those against the liquor store argue that having alcohol that close to the sobriety center would be an awful temptation for those trying to get away from alcohol and stay sober.

A final zone hearing meeting will decide the future of the potential liquor store in three weeks.